More on Tunisia

Helena Cobban was interviewed on Fair’s Counterspin.

Listen to the interview to get all the details. LSW lists some of the salient points.

Tunisia has been ruled by two strong men during the past 30 years. After achieving independence from France in 1957 the country was led by its first president, Habib BourguibaZine who was followed by El Abidine Ben Ali in 1987 (information from Wikipedia). Oppression marked the rule of both men as well as their close ties to the West, which kept the country safe for European tourists but did not benefit the 10 million residents of the country. Cobban suggests that listeners go to Amnesty or Human Rights Watch to find documents on the oppression exercised by Tunisia’s dictators.

The latest events were sparked by rising food prices and a lack of jobs and lack of hope. The U.S. political elites fears that this unrest could spread to the important U.S. clients Egypt and Jordan who have signed peace deals with Israel.

The unrest or should it be called an uprising, is has no base in religious movements, Both Islamic and leftist secularist parties have been repressed and it is not clear who is most powerful and/or best organized. Due to the repression, no one knows the sentiments of these parties.

Cobban fears that the forces of counter-revolution (military with links to the U.S. military and the police who have links to the French security apparatus) may mix themselves into events.

During the interviews she speaks about Anne Applebaum’s (Wapo columnist, and married to the rightwing Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorsk) and her ‘Delugist’ narrative on Tunisia.

She says that the role of Wikileaks amounted to publishing what was already known but confirmed the corruption and made clear that the U.S. ambassador knew about this for years and did nothing.

Cobban has an extensive post on Just World News about Anne Applebaum, Anne Applebaum and the ‘Delugist’ narrative on Tunisia . A quote should suffice to prompt the reader to read it:

“There is a powerful constellation of forces in the Middle East that wants to see Tunisia’s current popular uprising fail. This constellation includes: (1) All the other U.S.-supported autocrats in the Arab world, now terrified that Pres. Ben Ali’s hasty departure from the country his family has looted for so long may foretell their own; (2) The U.S. securocracy, which for years now has relied heavily on inserting military “advisers”, “trainers”, etc into the highest levels of all these autocracies to help it pursue some of the most repressive portions of the so-called “Global War on Terror”; and (3) The Israeli establishment, which sees the rule of autocrats in Egypt, Jordan, etc as essential to the continued repression of pro-Palestinian activities in and by these countries.

Last week, we saw so many amazing scenes of the unarmed, inte”

TheTunisia page has been updated to reflect the information in this post.

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